This color contains the following pigments:
Naphthol Carmine is a lightly staining, dull red pigment with a color similar to Rose Madder, the natural source of the historic color Alizarin Crimson.
Naphthol Carmine has been reported to have inferior lightfastness compared to more modern sythetic pigments that replace it.
Although there have been no reports of acute toxicity, research has suggested that PR23 is genotoxic, and potentially mutagenic.
Naphthol Carmine was an early synthetic substitute for Rose Madder and Carmine. Before the late 19th centuries, reddish purple colors such as Alizarin Crimson, Tyrian Purple, and Carmine were available only from vegetable and animal sources. The manufacture and preparation of these colors was expensive. Clothing and textiles in these colors were considered a mark of affluence and distinction. Because Naphthol Carmine was far less expensive than the natural colors it replaced, it helped to create a revolution in color in the 19th century, as new color choices became available to the general population at affordable prices. These new sythetic dyes all but destroyed an industry in natural dyestuffs that had once employed thousands. Today, Naphthol Carmine has been largely superceeded by more permanent naphthol dyes.